Archive for Friday, November 30, 2007

K-State falls to Oregon in OT

November 30, 2007


— Oregon had never, in its 105-year history, been in this position: on the road, facing a ranked opponent outside its conference.

Overwhelming? Maybe at first. Then the Ducks got over it.

Bryce Taylor scored 11 of his 18 points after halftime, and Maarty Leunen had 14 points and 14 rebounds to help No. 17 Oregon rally from a shaky start then hold off No. 25 Kansas State, 80-77 in overtime, Thursday night.

"It was all about confidence," Oregon coach Ernie Kent said. "I didn't think we were playing with much confidence in the first half. We just talked about being free, just go out and play, have fun. This is a great environment, it's a nationally televised game, so just go have fun and enjoy the game."

The Ducks sure did, though only after getting caught up in the moment.

Facing a ranked nonconference opponent for the first time in five years, Oregon (6-1) came out flat, missing open shots - 3-for-15 from 3-point range in the first half - and struggling defensively as Kansas State rode the momentum of a raucous crowd to jump to an early lead.

But the Ducks settled down late in the half, hit some big shots down the stretch in regulation, then finished it off by overpowering the Wildcats in overtime.

Joevan Catron had 15 points and Tajuan Porter added 14 for Oregon, still trying to find its identity with Aaron Brooks, last year's leading scorer, playing in the NBA.

"It just turned out to be a great road win for us because this is a team that's still in transition, trying to find which man or men is going to be that Aaron Brooks," Kent said.

Oregon wasn't the only one in unfamiliar territory.

Kansas State (5-2) hadn't faced a ranked nonconference opponent at home since 2000, and Manhattan hadn't seen two ranked teams on the same court since No. 1 Missouri beat 14th-ranked Kansas State by one in 1982.

No. 22 USC 66, Oklahoma 55

Los Angeles - Davon Jefferson scored 23 points, and fellow freshman O.J. Mayo took charge down the stretch to lead No. 22 Southern California.

Mayo scored 11 consecutive points beginning with 6:48 remaining as the Trojans (6-1) opened a 60-48 lead with 3:35 to play.

He finished with 18 points, 15 in the second half.

Jefferson had a team-high nine rebounds. Dwight Lewis added 11 points for the Trojans.

Keith Clark and Austin Johnson led Oklahoma (5-2) with 13 points apiece, but they were the only Sooners in double figures. Taylor Griffin had nine rebounds for Oklahoma.

The last time the teams met, the Sooners won 92-91 on Nov. 25, 1983. USC's victory in the long-delayed rematch evened the all-time series at five wins apiece.

USC limited the Sooners to 36 percent shooting from the field, while the Trojans shot 44 percent.

The Trojans lost their only other home game this season, a 96-81 defeat to Mercer in the season opener.

Colorado 60, Air Force 50

Air Force Academy, Colo. - Colorado coach Jeff Bzdelik wanted a shirt like the Air Force fans were wearing, with his photo splashed on the front and a giant red "x" across the likeness.

"But they told me I had to buy it," Bzdelik said.

Nothing comes free for former coaches.

Bzdelik weathered the taunts and jeers, and Richard Roby scored a season-high 21 points as Colorado escaped with a victory in Bzdelik's return to Clune Arena.

He's just glad to have this game over and done with. Bzdelik coached two seasons at Air Force before bolting for the Buffaloes last April.

"When I said it was another game, I wasn't telling the truth," said Bzdelik, who was 50-16 while at Air Force. "My emotions were all over the map. I truly love this place."


Julie Craig 10 years, 6 months ago

How rude, confrontation.

All the Wildcats need is better free throw shooting down the stretch and these losses will turn into W's. Go big purple!

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